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Hurricane Energy has taken an important step forward to producing oil from its Lancaster field, west of Shetland.

Hurricane – which focuses on exploration work in ‘naturally-fractured’ reservoirs, has announced that the UK Oil and Gas Authority has agreed to its request for a field determination area for Lancaster.

The OGA has now granted the Hurricane discovery official oil field status as Oil Field Number 572. This represents the first step in progressing the submission of the Lancaster early production system and field development plan.

Surrey-based Hurricane has successfully test-drilled oil from its Lancaster well, west of Shetland, in an area between Scotland and the Faroe islands which holds around 20% of Britain’s untapped oil and gas resources.

A recent note from Edison investment research said: “Hurricane is currently seeking a farm-out to fund early production, targeting first oil in late 2017, with full field production five years later.

“While the farm-out market is currently subdued, Lancaster may attract interested parties due to its high well deliverability and relatively simple development scheme.”

Dr Robert Trice, Chief Executive, commented: "I'm delighted that the Oil and Gas Authority has granted Lancaster oil field status which is an important step in progressing to first oil from Lancaster. Furthermore, the granting of oil field status for Lancaster helps the partitioning of Hurricane's other discoveries and prospects that sit within Licence P1368."

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